youtube directed me to this video and I thought I’d share with you folks.
Eddy, what brand/make of tailpiece is on the cello banjo?
Thanks Sherry for making it live. The Gibson Cello Banjo was stock -- it was original. I bought it years ago from George Gruhn in Nashville and it went to Neil, a fellow in New Jersey that's gone now, so don't know where it is. I had 2 Cello Banjo's. The second was a B & D that was one of a pair that came from Walter K. Bower's Banjo Orchestra. I don't know where it is either. I never got a good response from my work with the New York Banjo Ensemble -- It left a bad taste in my mouth -- so it faded away. I was very HAPPY with the music and the GROUP, but the Banjo community never seemed to care -- so it faded away. The public response to our concerts was terrific, but the people that call themselves Banjo People are a bunch of "Strange Ducks". They have never really cared about the Banjo or it's future or history as long as I've been involved -- and that's been 60 years of playing. They talk about caring about the banjo, BUT the only thing they really care about is there ego. All my observations turn out that way. Give me a banjo and let me "BEAT ON IT!" I love you all, but let's be honest. Then we can enjoy ourselves.
Looking forward to seeing you all at All-Frets in Buffalo in July. Eddy (just a Minstrel) Davis
I hear you, Eddy. Many banjo players (especially 30+ years back) were more focused on their own personal enjoyment in amateur ensemble playing that they ignored the deeper history of the instrument family and it's broad and deep diversity. I was SO BLESSED to be invited to sub in the cello chair with the NYBE with yourself, Cynthia and Frank Vignola, plus Howard Alden, Wayne Wright, Mike Peters, Pete Compo and Joel Eckhaus at various points. It provided a key part of the foundation which I now teach in the Jazz History course at my college. There are a number of good, interested younger players today - but I regret that the failure of the larger banjo community in that past time to support and promote innovative approaches. It kept the Ensemble under the wider public radar AND perpetuated the perception of the banjo as a "specialty/novelty/old-time" artifact. That (along with influences of market-segmenting and technology) makes earning cultural respect and appreciation for banjo as both an historic and vital instrument more difficult today.
My late pal, banjo player and former congressman Otis Pike tried for years to get the banjo enshrined on a US postal service stamp...to my knowledge, that still hasn't happened.
BTW - I loved playing that Gibson trap-door cello!!
I always have the NYBE disc in rotation, and will listen to it on a little 3hr drive this morning. I just want to play some nice chords and some cool lines, maybe pick up a bar gig once in awhile on my tenor. I'm happy. Thanks again for all the great material Eddy.
I was sorry to see the painful comment made at 3:10 on the time code. The clueless moderator says: "So, do you feel 'g-o-o-f-y' when you play the banjo?" He just had a front row seat at a world class duet on two species of four-string banjo, but it's all completely lost on this guy. Chances are he's never heard music like this before and that's the best line he can come up with. Some people just can't be reached. Why? They simply don't have the gray matter for it. Close-minded people like this are quick to buy into an old prejudice. When I play the banjo, I usually feel empowered, exhilarated and like I'm preserving something I really care about. It's my second religion. The banjo is a great blessing if there ever was one.
Edited by - Omeboy on 05/17/2018 07:07:57
Thanks to you all for your responses. I had asked about the cello banjo tailpiece because I recently bought a used, homemade/handmade, minstrel-style 4-string cello banjo and I’m trying to troubleshoot the problem of the D string breaking. I think the problem might be the current tailpeice is allowing the strings to rub against the metal hoop.
I bought this cello banjo because about 10 years ago I hear one played and thought it had such a cool sound and tone. As I continue to check off items on the bucket list I came to “Learn to play tenor banjo” which was followed immediately by “Buy Cello Banjo.” Making progress!
If either of you, Eddy or Bob, might have cello banjo parts for tunes you could share I would appreciate it. I didn’t know the NYBE recording still was available. I’ve only seen the youtube videos. I’’ll look for the cd. The quartet sound, for me, is a wonderful approach to the music.
Thank you, Eddy, for all you’ve done for the instrument and the music. Play on!!
And, I don’t know how the font changed while typing this this post!
Maybe you could revive the NYBE Eddy. A reunion type of thing. That would be cool as all get out. Do you still have all the scores?
'MY ROSE OF OLD KENTUKY' 2 hrs
'Good Sunday Morning' 4 hrs
'Ome Trilogy' 8 hrs
'Bishline Heirloom' 8 hrs